Published March 13, 2020
This video was recorded by Zubair Torwali at Abdul's home in Bahrain, Swat, Pakistan as part of the 1947 Partition Archive, an oral history initiative to chronicle the partition of India and Pakistan. Torwali is a language spoken by about 80,000 people in Northern Pakistan. Its two dialects, Bahrain and Chail, are 89% similar in their lexicons. Torwali is a member of the Dardic branch, which also includes Kashmiri, of the Indo-Aryan subfamily of the Indo-European languages. Speakers of Torwali often also speak Urdu or Southern Pashto, and Ushojo speakers use it as a second language. There exist efforts towards language education, such as a multilingual program bridging Urdu and Torwali for young speakers, and some small-case primary school education in the language. Nevertheless, the language is not losing speakers, and is spoken at home as well as in the community.